What’s the Deal with The Parrot Picture?

The featured image for this post is a fake parrot and its shadow, which I saw in one of my favorite restaurants back in Vancouver, WA, which I think closed down during the pandemic.

I wanted to take a moment to explain why I used it as the hero image on my about page, in case anyone was wondering.

Like the effect of many websites out there, the fake parrot makes a pretty realistic shadow. Even though the amount of people buying and selling things online has increased due to Covid, too many folks are still not aware of what makes an effective website.

If you hadn’t seen the fake parrot in the picture, you might think it was made by a real parrot. Because web development and digital marketing are relatively new industries, it isn’t always easy for ordinary folks to tell if a website will work in advance. But there are clues to a trained eye.

If you aren’t familiar with what makes a good website different from a poor one, you might need someone to point it out. So, that’s what I’d like to share a few things about in this blog post in case it might be helpful to you.

How can you tell a good website from a poor one?

Here’s a short list of pointers to look for:

  • Is your website helping you convert visitors into customers? When people visit your website, is it easy for them to quickly learn your main value proposition, within five seconds or less? Try asking a stranger to visit your website and see if they can get the point within five seconds of loading your homepage. Your site should be your best salesperson, always on, 24/7 customer service.
  • Does your website effectively engage visitors? If your site doesn’t have helpful, high-quality content that answers visitors’ questions when they are interested in your business, then your site may need some help. There are different phases to your target audience’s journey. Is your site providing answers, resources, and value at every step?
  • Can your target audience discover your site through search engines or other means? If your website isn’t optimized for search engines, or if it is only optimized for search engines and not for your visitors, then it may be hard for new visitors within your target audience to discover your company through your website or want to stay there after arriving. Try typing in your website URL on Google’s Ad Preview and Diagnosis Tool. You’ll get a view of your rankings that is unbiased by your personal search history.
  • Is your website easy to manage? This may not matter if your developer or agency handles posting content for you. But sometimes it does, like if you ask for something to get added, and they give you several reasons why it isn’t possible. If you manage it yourself, is it easy to add content and keep it up to date?

As always, thanks for reading and I hope you found this article helpful!